On Apr 25, 2012, at 10:59 AM, Paul Archer wrote:

> 9:59am, Richard Elling wrote:
>> On Apr 25, 2012, at 5:48 AM, Paul Archer wrote:
>>      This may fall into the realm of a religious war (I hope not!), but 
>> recently several people on this list have
>>      said/implied that ZFS was only acceptable for production use on FreeBSD 
>> (or Solaris, of course) rather than Linux
>>      with ZoL.
>>      I'm working on a project at work involving a large(-ish) amount of 
>> data, about 5TB, working its way up to 12-15TB
>> This is pretty small by today's standards.  With 4TB disks, that is only 3-4 
>> disks + redundancy.
> True. At my last job, we were used to researchers asking for individual 4-5TB 
> filesystems, and 1-2TB increases in size. When I left, there was over a 100TB 
> online (in '07).

100TB is medium sized for today's systems, about 4RU or less :-)

>>      eventually, spread among a dozen or so nodes. There may or may not be a 
>> clustered filesystem involved (probably
>>      gluster if we use anything).
>> I wouldn't dream of building a clustered file system that small. Maybe when 
>> you get into the
>> multiple-PB range, then it might make sense.
> The point of a clustered filesystem was to be able to spread our data out 
> among all nodes and still have access from any node without having to run 
> NFS. Size of the data set (once you get past the point where you can 
> replicate it on each node) is irrelevant.

Interesting, something more complex than NFS to avoid the complexities of NFS? 

>>      I've been looking at ZoL as the primary filesystem for this data. We're 
>> a Linux shop, so I'd rather not switch to
>>      FreeBSD, or any of the Solaris-derived distros--although I have no 
>> problem with them, I just don't want to
>>      introduce another OS into the mix if I can avoid it.
>>      So, the actual questions are:
>>      Is ZoL really not ready for production use?
>>      If not, what is holding it back? Features? Performance? Stability?
>> The computer science behind ZFS is sound. But it was also developed for 
>> Solaris which
>> is quite different than Linux under the covers. So the Linux and other OS 
>> ports have issues
>> around virtual memory system differences and fault management differences. 
>> This is the
>> classic "getting it to work is 20% of the effort, getting it to work when 
>> all else is failing is
>> the other 80%" case.
>>  -- richard
> I understand the 80/20 rule. But this doesn't really answer the question(s). 
> If there weren't any major differences among operating systems, the project 
> probably would have been done long ago.

The issues are not only technical :-(

> To put it slightly differently, if I used ZoL in production, would I be 
> likely to experience performance or stability problems? Or would it be 
> lacking in features that I would likely need?

It seems reasonably stable for the casual use cases. 

As for the features, that is a much more difficult question to answer. For 
example, if
you use ACLs, you might find that some userland tools on some distros have full 
no support for ACLs.

Let us know how it works out for you.
 -- richard

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